John-Ward Leighton CD

ON THE EVE OF THE 11th

72nd Seaforth Highlander Cap Badge
72nd Seaforth Highlander Cap Badge

John-Ward Leighton CD: On The Eve Of The 11th
Photo ©Copyright 2012
by John-Ward Leighton CD
shoes shone medals buffed
hat badge squared away
and as always the weather
is as miserable as that day in 1918
as the Canadian Corp fought its way into Mons
always in the last hundred days
in the lead of the British Army
a scant last day for the last man killed
a Private Price G. L.
while on patrol
killed by a sniper at 10:58 hrs. 11th of November 1918
as a member of the 28th North-western battalion
sixth brigade 2nd Canadian Division
I wonder what his family and friends
thought about his demise
the last surviving members of his battalion
had a plaque placed at the spot in 1968
tomorrow I will think of this man
who was in his early twenties
with his whole life in front of him
who died in a bit of youthful bravado
checking out potential billets
for the beginning of the Armistice

I have been on parade at the cenotaph
every year since 1948
except for those years
when I was in the service
and posted elsewhere
my first parade was with
the 72nd Seaforth Highlander Cadets
in kilts and full regimental kit
with veterans of the South African War
on parade
as a twelve year old